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"There is a war on Christianity. The West must stop being scared to say so"

Nach den Bombenanschlägen auf zwei Kirchen in Ägypten kritisiert Tim Stanley, dass über radikalislamische Gewalt gegen Christen im Nahen Osten in vielen westlichen Medien eher beiläufig berichtet werde. "Why do Westerners behave oddly when it’s Christians being murdered abroad? Political correctness is partly to blame – that secular form of Christian guilt about things we’ve done, failed to do, and did a long time ago to foreign people (which means, we seem to assume, that they can do no wrong today). But also PC allied to real politick – the fear that by calling this a religious war on Christians, we confirm the radical Islamist’s narrative of Christianity vs Islam and ramp up the sectarian divide. (...) There is one other reason why we’re so nervous about engaging with this fight: the West is reluctant to identify itself as Christian. Our spirit has become so weak, our culture so vapid, that we struggle to see that the rights, the democracy, the religious pluralism that we all enjoy in our part of the world were not invented yesterday but are part of a historic, global story of Christian social progress."

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"Theresa May 'would go to war' to defend the sovereignty of Gibraltar"

In den Verhandlungen über den Brexit will die EU Spanien offenbar ein Vetorecht über Vereinbarungen zur Zukunft der britischen Enklave Gibraltar einräumen. Verteidigungsminister Michael Fallon hat daraufhin bekräftigt, dass die britische Regierung ihre Souveränität in Gibraltar entschlossen verteidigen werde. "Speaking to the BBC's Andrew Marr show, Mr Fallon said: 'The people of Gibraltar have made it clear that they don't want to live under the sovereignty of Spain. Gibraltar is going to be protected all the way.' Meanwhile, Lord Howard told Sky News's Sophy Ridge on Sunday: 'There is no question whatever that our Government will stand by Gibraltar.' 'Thirty-five years ago this week another woman Prime Minister sent a task force half way across the world to defend the freedom of another small group of British people against another Spanish-speaking country.'"

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"As the net tightens around it in Syria and Iraq, Isil will continue to lash out abroad"

Terroristische Angriffe wie der von London könnten sich im Zuge der militärischen Zerschlagung des "Islamischen Staates" in Irak und Syrien wiederholen, fürchtet Julie Lenarz im britischen Telegraph. "The reason why so many young men and women have flocked to the Middle East in order to join Isil is the myth of invincibility that lies at the heart of the terrorist organisation’s appeal. Carrying out successful attacks against Western targets allows Isil’s leadership to keep alive the impression of strength. And as the group dispatches cells to carry out attacks in the West, they have also inspired a number of “lone wolf” attacks – atrocities carried out by individuals in the name of the organisation without ever having been instructed by them. Those self-radicalised militants are keen to become part of the wider Isil family and demonstrate why defeating the organisation in Iraq and Syria does not necessarily contain the threat at home."

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"Head of MI6: Britain faces 'fundamental threat to sovereignty from Russian meddling'"

Der Chef des britischen Geheimdienstes MI6, Alex Younger, hat Hackerangriffe aus Russland und anderen "feindlichen Staaten" dem Telegraph zufolge als "fundamentale Bedrohung" der britischen Souveränität bezeichnet. "Alex Younger used his first major public speech as head of the Secret Intelligence Service to attack the Kremlin for creating a human tragedy in Syria and to warn of the threat to the UK from high-tech subversion by countries such as Russia. (...) Mr Younger, known as C, said his intelligence officers were having to counter 'the increasingly dangerous phenomenon of hybrid warfare'. Speaking to reporters at MI6’s headquarters in central London on Thursday morning, he said: 'The connectivity that is at the heart of globalisation can be exploited by states with hostile intent to further their aims deniably. They do this through means as varied as cyber-attacks, propaganda or subversion of democratic process.' He went on: 'The risks at stake are profound and represent a fundamental threat to our sovereignty; they should be a concern to all those who share democratic values.'"

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"Islamic State retreat reveals terror plots against Europe"

Der Rückzug von IS-Kämpfern in Irak und Syrien habe wertvolle Informationen über die Planung von Terroranschlägen in Europa zu Tage gefördert, berichtet der britische Telegraph nach einem Gespräch mit General Rupert Jones in Irak. "Intelligence of attack plots across Europe is being uncovered as Islamic State’s caliphate is beaten back, the top British officer in the military coalition fighting the extremists has disclosed. A trove of information has already been found and the capture of the Iraqi city of Mosul is expected to deliver more on the plans, finances and members of Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (Isil). (...) The volume of intelligence being found is so large the coalition has set up a lab in the Gulf to plunder militants’ laptops, phones and drives for their secrets and then pass them to intelligence agencies. The capture of the Syrian town of Manbij, which acted as a gateway for jihadists travelling into Turkey and on to Europe, was an intelligence breakthrough, he said. But he warned the militants would still be able to direct plots while they remained in their capital, Raqqa."

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"Europe's liberal establishment must learn some humility and stop bashing Donald Trump - or face an American backlash"

Peter Foster rät dem "liberalen Establishment" Europas im konservativen Telegraph, dem neuen US-Präsidenten mit etwas mehr Demut entgegen zu treten. Es sei wenig hilfreich, wenn Bundeskanzlerin Merkel Donald Trump an die westlichen Werte erinnere oder EU-Kommissionspräsident Jean-Claude Juncker ankündige, Trump beibringen zu wollen, "wie Europa funktioniert". "No-one should be under any illusion about the properly nasty edge to Mr Trump’s politics - Steve Bannon, his senior strategist and now counsellor, is a provocateur whose 'alt-right' web forum is a haven for white supremacists and anti-semites. But while no-one expects Mrs Merkel to wholeheartedly embrace Mr Trump – she will have a day-long commiseration with Barack Obama this Thursday – the idea that finger-wagging from Europe will achieve anything other than a backlash from Washington is simply naive. At root, it says that – even after Brexit and now Trump – the European liberal establishment still has not learned any humility in the face of electorates who are now demanding to be heard. It is the ideological equivalent of 'let them eat cake'."

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"Russia and the West have 'entered a new Cold War'"

Der neue "Kalte Krieg" zwischen Russland und dem Westen habe nach Ansicht vieler Experten in Moskau bereits begonnen, berichtet Roland Oliphant, Russland-Korrespondent des britischen Telegraph. Russland habe die internationale Hegemonie der USA herausgefordert, nun drohe eine gefährliche Konfrontation wie in der Kubakrise des Jahres 1962. "Russian experts fear the near-collapse of diplomacy has increased the dangers of a 'hot' proxy war or even the nightmare scenario: direct Russian-Western warfare. Potential flashpoints include the Baltic, where Nato and Russia have accused one another of troop builds, and eastern Ukraine, where Russia continues to supply and direct the separatist republics of Donetsk and Luhansk. The most dangerous flashpoint is Syria. Bashar al-Assad, the Moscow-allied Syrian president, said last week that the conflict was already turning into a direct US-Russian confrontation."

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"Bloody battle to retake Mosul begins as Iraqi forces move to wipe out Isil's last major stronghold in the region"

Josie Ensor, Korrespondentin des britischen Telegraph, begleitet irakische Spezialeinheiten in Mosul und berichtet über den Beginn der Schlacht zur Vertreibung des "Islamischen Staates" aus der irakischen Millionenstadt. "The Iraqi army has begun the 'mother of all battles' to liberate the city of Mosul from Isil, in the hope of dislodging them from their last major stronghold in the country. (...) The offensive is a joint operation by more than 30,000 troops from the Iraqi army, Kurdish Peshmerga and a Shia paramilitary force, which are pushing in on the city from three sides. Some 8,000 jihadists have dug in in Mosul, which has been under Isil’s control since the militants swept through northern Iraq in a blitzkrieg in the summer of 2014."

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"UN says armed Syrian groups blocking Aleppo aid for 'political gain'"

Raf Sanchez berichtet, dass die UN-Hilfen, die im Zuge des neuen Waffenstillstands in Aleppo in die Stadt gebracht werden sollen, offenbar von einigen Rebellengruppen blockiert worden sind. "'Some parties to the conflict are trying to use this for political gain,' said David Swanson, a UN spokesman. 'The challenge for us is ensuring that all parties to the conflict are on the same page. If one element of the chain is not there we cannot proceed.' The UN would not say if the hold was up was being caused by the Assad regime or its rebel opponents but at least part of the problem appeared to be inside east Aleppo itself. Activists there said they intended to reject the UN aid in protest at the ceasefire agreement which was brokered between the US and Russia without input from the Syrian opposition. Video from Aleppo showed a large demonstration against the UN had gathered at Castello Road, the key supply route that the aid convoy would have to travel down."

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"Assassinating al-Qaeda's leaders crushed its power. Will the same happen with Isil?"

David Blair hält die umstrittene Taktik der gezielten Tötung führender Mitglieder von Terrororganisationen im Fall der Al-Qaida für gerechtfertigt und hofft beim "Islamischen Staat" auf ähnliche Ergebnisse. "If 'core al-Qaeda' is a shadow of its former self, then the heavy toll inflicted by Predators and Reapers is a big part of the explanation. So why do targeted assassinations damage al-Qaeda but have little effect on the likes of Hamas and Hizbollah? The answer lies in the differing nature of these groups. Rather than being a movement firmly grounded in a society, al-Qaeda was a network, built around individuals with charisma and expertise. Once those kingpins were toppled by missiles falling from a clear sky, the network around them crumbled. Whatever technical or other expertise the targets had built up over the years proved extremely difficult to replace. (...) the question of whether killing Adnani will weaken Isil depends, at root, on whether the movement is closer to al-Qaeda or Hamas."

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"Germany is in a dangerous state of denial about immigration, Islam and terrorism"

Der britische Telegraph wirft Deutschland in diesem Leitartikel vor, den Zusammenhang zwischen Einwanderung, radikalem Islam und Terrorismus beharrlich auszublenden. Dies werde längerfristig dazu führen, dass die notwendigen Fragen von "unappetitlichen Elementen" beantwortet werden. "Western democracies are now frequently experiencing political events that were previously considered unthinkable, at least by their political elites. If there is a common theme to Brexit, the candidacy of Donald Trump and the rise of the Front National in France, it is that political establishments which ignore and ridicule voters’ concerns about issues including immigration and cultural cohesion are simply storing up trouble for the future. Such concerns do not go away just because politicians refuse to acknowledge them, instead erupting unpredictably. To avoid these eruptions, those worries must be addressed sensibly and calmly by mainstream politicians. Otherwise the only beneficiaries are fringe factions more inclined to exploit social problems than solve them. Too many German leaders remain in denial about the questions raised by Mrs Merkel’s open-door immigration policy. They must end that denial and start answering those questions, before less savoury elements offer their own answers."

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"Erdogan's purge may give Nato no choice but to expel Turkey from the alliance"

Angesichts der landesweiten Säuberungswelle der türkischen Regierung nach dem Putschversuch hält Con Coughlin es für möglich, dass die NATO die Türkei ausschließen könnte. "(...) it is a measure of Mr Erdogan’s unpopularity among other Nato members that Turkey now faces the very real prospect of suspension from the alliance. Many European leaders are still seething over the Turkish leader’s role in helping to create last summer’s migration crisis, when he failed to take firm measures to curb the activities of people-smuggling gangs. Concerns also persist about his commitment to the Islamist cause, and especially his regime’s links to al-Qaeda-related groups in Syria. In an ideal world, it would be in everyone’s interests for Mr Erdogan to cease his efforts to turn Turkey into an Iranian-style Islamic republic, thereby allowing Turkey to retain its place at Nato’s top table. But if he really is determined to pursue his radical Islamist agenda, then Nato will have no option but to rid itself of its troublesome Turkish ally."

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"The Nice terror attack is why Donald Trump might win"

Terroranschläge wie der von Nizza könnten dem US-Präsidentschaftskandidaten Donald Trump im November tatsächlich zum Sieg verhelfen, ist Tim Stanley überzeugt. "Images of terrorism in Nice confirm Trump’s narrative that the West has lost its way and new management is needed. He is the law and order candidate in a time of grave disorder. (...) I don’t mean law and order in the sense of defending the Constitution: even Mike Pence once observed that Trump’s proposed ban on Muslim immigration contradicts that much misread document. But Democrats aren’t too hot on constitutionality, either. Barack Obama has assassinated US citizens with drone strikes and Hillary Clinton has lied in office and probably endangered national security. No, Trump embodies not legalistic niceties but rough justice – at a time when Western society seems, to many voters, far too tolerant and weak."

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"Nato launches biggest war game in eastern Europe since cold war amid Russia tensions"

Der Telegraph berichtet über den Beginn des größten Militärmanövers der NATO seit dem Ende des Kalten Krieges. "The two-week long Anaconda manoeuvres are aimed at 'checking the alliance's ability to defend its eastern flank,' Polish Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz said at formal opening ceremonies in Warsaw before troops hit the ground on Tuesday. More than 31,000 soldiers from 24 NATO and former-Soviet 'Partnership for Peace' states including Ukraine are taking part in the manoeuvres, held biannually across Poland since 2006."

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"Turkey visa deal will increase risk of terrorist attacks, EU report reveals"

Die Umsetzung der geplanten Visafreiheit für türkische Staatsbürger würde das Terrorismusrisiko in Europa deutlich erhöhen, heißt es dem britischen Telegraph zufolge in einem Bericht der EU-Kommission. "Foreign terrorists and organised criminals are 'expected' to seek Turkish passports to reach continental Europe 'as soon as' the visa waiver program comes into force, a European Commission report said. The disclosure came as Sir Richard Dearlove, the former head of MI6, warned that the decision to give Turkey visa-free travel is 'perverse' and compared it to 'storing gasoline next to the fire'. Sir Richard also said that the EU will face a 'populist uprising' if it fails to control migration."

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"'UK Muslim ghettoes' warning"

Der ehemalige Vorsitzende der Gleichberechtigungs- und Menschenrechtskommission (EHRC), Trevor Phillips, hat anlässlich der Veröffentlichung einer neuen Umfrage unter britischen Muslimen davor gewarnt, dass muslimische Gemeinden sich im Königreich zu einem "Staat im Staate" entwickeln könnten. "Commenting on a ground-breaking survey, Trevor Phillips said we are 'in danger of sacrificing a generation of young British people to values that are antithetical to the beliefs of most of us, including many Muslims'. He called for a new, tougher approach to integration and the abandonment of 'the failed policy of multiculturalism'. The survey had made 'one truly terrifying' conclusion that 'Muslims who have separatist views about how they want to live in Britain are far more likely to support terrorism than those who do not', added Mr Phillips, who ran the EHRC until 2012 and was previously in charge of the Commission for Racial Equality."

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"Obama vetoed Assad overthrow plans"

Einem früheren CIA-Mitarbeiter zufolge hat US-Präsident Obama in den vergangenen Jahren mehrfach konkrete Pläne des Geheimdienstes zum Sturz des syrischen Präsidenten Assad abgelehnt. "Mr Laux now says that was because more elaborate schemes drawn up and backed not only by former General Petraeus, Hillary Clinton when secretary of state, and defence secretary Leon Panetta were all rejected by Mr Obama. 'We had come up with 50 good options,' he said in an interview with the American television channel NBC. 'My ops plan laid them out in black and white. But political leadership … hadn't given us the go-ahead to implement a single one.' (...) The CIA has been dismissive of the book in public. 'Sadly, Mr. Laux's career at CIA did not work out,' it said in a statement. 'We hope that someday, maybe with age and greater maturity, he will have better perspective on his time here.'"

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"Assassinations, unrest and military defeat – has the tide turned against Islamic State?"

Im vom "Islamischen Staat" beherrschten Westen Iraks gerate die Terrormiliz zunehmend unter Druck, berichtet Richard Spencer aus Bagdad. Es gebe offenbar vereinzelte Rebellionen gegen lokale IS-Anführer. "In Fallujah, once seen as the most pro-jihadist city in Iraq, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) was forced to put down a mini-rebellion that began in an argument in a bread queue, spread to three districts and ended with a series of executions. In the town of Heet further west, a local tribal leader said a relative was on the run after he took revenge for a personal insult by assassinating six local officials of Isil. The stories are hard to corroborate as Isil is blocking people from leaving the towns. But they conform with tales told by refugees from Isil control in neighbouring Syria, who say Isil’s interference in the every day lives of its subjects, combined with its growing need to recruit fighters locally, is causing increasing discontent."

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"US planning to strike Isil in Libya based on 'faulty intelligence'"

Einige Experten glauben Ruth Sherlock zufolge, dass die US-Regierung die Stärke des "Islamischen Staates" in Libyen überschätze. "American intelligence agencies assess that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) has doubled in size in Libya, with between 5,000 and 6,500 fighters in the country. Privately, however, some US officials say they believe these estimates to be overblown. Independent experts have come to the same conclusion. 'The estimates of the number of jihadists is grossly exaggerated,' said Karim Mezran, a Libya expert with the Atlantic Council in Washington. Whilst Mr Mezran and other analysts were loathe to put a number on the size of the organisation, citing the chaos and lack of access to Isil areas in Libya, all said they believed the real figure to be only 20 to 40 per cent of the US estimate."

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"Isil exploiting migrant routes to smuggle jihadists back to Britain using fake documents"

Britischen Geheimdienstmitarbeitern zufolge nutzt der "Islamische Staat" die Flüchtlingskrise in Europa, um Terroristen mit professionell gefälschten Reisepässen unbemerkt in europäische Länder einzuschleusen und "Schläferzellen" für künftige Anschläge zu bilden. "They are mainly travelling on fake Syrian or Iraqi passports which are now so sophisticated it is almost impossible to distinguish between genuine refugees and terror suspects. (...) The strategy is being run out of Isil’s Syrian stronghold in Raqqa where would-be recruits are briefed and handed new identities. It also means suspects who were under watch by the intelligence agencies suddenly vanish."

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"Mapped: How the migration crisis is a strain on Europe's democracies"

Raziye Akkoc stellt den neuen Democracy Index 2015 der Organisation Economist's Intelligence Unit (EIU) vor, in der Auswirkungen der Flüchtlingskrise auf die demokratischen Strukturen Europas analysiert worden sind. "The impact of the crisis will 'last decades' and see EU nations make greater decisions on a national level - using their opt-outs more - said the Economist's Intelligence Unit (EIU) in their Democracy Index 2015 report. According to its ranking, one European country, France, ceased to be classed as a full democracy, which was 'the result of a deterioration in social cohesion' and pointed to the rise of the Front National (FN) as 'just one example of an increased appetite among voters in western Europe for populist, anti-immigrant and eurosceptic parties'. According to Joan Hoey, editor of the report, anxiety and insecurity caused by terrorism and economic threats throughout the world is particularly pronounced in Europe."

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"Turkey must decide whose side it is on in Syria: Isil or the West"

Con Coughlin hofft, dass die türkische Regierung ihre Strategie im Syrienkonflikt nach dem jüngsten Selbstmordanschlag von Istanbul überdenkt. Bisher stehe für Präsident Erdogan der Kampf gegen die Kurden im Vordergrund, nun sei es an der Zeit, dass er sich dem Westen bei der Bekämpfung des "Islamischen Staats" anschließt. "Any assistance the Turkish authorities may have provided to Isil will have been on the basis that the Islamist fighters are at war with the Kurds, whom the Turks regard as a far greater threat to their long-term security. A tacit understanding like this – such as the Turks turning a blind eye to Isil’s smuggling operations – works only so long as Isil does not pose a direct threat to Turkey’s own security interests. If, as now seems likely, Isil was behind yesterday’s Istanbul bombing, then the terrorists have clearly crossed an important red line for the Turks, one that could have a profound impact on the future of the US-led coalition’s military campaign to destroy Isil."

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"Islamic State is building a 'retreat zone' in Libya with 3000 fighters, say UN experts"

UN-Experten zufolge ist die Terrormiliz "Islamischer Staat" gegenwärtig dabei, sich in Libyen eine neue "Rückzugszone" zu schaffen. "(...) a number of senior Isil leaders are believed to have arrived in the country during the past year. The dangers are already apparent. The gunman who shot dead 30 British tourists in Tunisia in June is known to have received training in Libya. The 24-page report, presented to the UN Security council by a committee charged with monitoring sanctions against al-Qaeda and other groups, concluded: 'The Isil central command in Iraq and the Syrian Arab Republic views Libya as the 'best' opportunity to expand its so-called caliphate.' At present it numbers some 2000-3000 fighters, said the report, with about 1500 now based in Sirte, Gadaffi's birthplace and the last major city to fall to rebels in 2011."

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"In Syria, Britain is making the same mistakes all over again"

Adam Holloway, Abgeordneter der Konservativen im britischen Unterhaus und Veteran des Golfkriegs von 1991, begründet, warum er am Mittwoch gegen den Syrieneinsatz gestimmt hat. "(...) for the last 15 years I have watched British governments join or create international 'coalitions' that have used military force without understanding what drives each conflict on the ground. This ignorance has had disastrous consequences for tens of millions of people in the Middle East and North Africa. (...) It's not good enough. War planes are indeed part of the mix. But the immediate battlespace is the Sunni population of Iraq and Syria, and if we are not addressing that another Brimstone missile is futile. If we really want to help, we should be using the influence we think we don’t have. We should be using it to communicate the message in every possible corridor that the US, Russia, Turkey, Iran and Saudi need to decide that they are serious about a cure – and that if they continue to apply palliative care in their own interests it will result in the sickness getting a lot worse."

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"British troops will be needed on ground to defeat Isil in Syria, former military chief signals"

Der frühere stellvertretende NATO-Oberbefehlshaber General Sir Richard Shirreff ist Tom Whitehead zufolge sicher, dass der IS nicht ohne den Einsatz westlicher Bodentruppen aus großen Städten wie Raqqa vertrieben werden könne. Hinzu komme, dass der Luftkrieg britischer Kampfflugzeuge in Syrien schnell an seine materiellen Grenzen stoßen werde. "'To take a city of 350,000 is going to need a massive force. Any fighting in cities soaks up troops in a massive way. It's very heavily attritional, it's bloody and it's a grim business.' Mr Cameron was also warned that any British involvement in airstrikes would be 'highly marginal' because the ageing fleet of Tornado fighter jets is too small to carry out an effective campaign. (...) Air Vice Marshal Sir John Walker, the former Chief of Defence Intelligence, said 24 aircraft would be needed if Britain was to have an impact."

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"The Russians had it coming to them"

Con Coughlin hält den türkischen Abschuss eines russischen Kampfflugzeuges in der Nähe der türkisch-syrischen Grenze für die absehbare Folge einer seit längerem andauernden "aggressiven" russischen Außenpolitik. "Last month incursions by Russian warplanes into Turkish air space prompted the US and its Nato allies to issue a blunt warning that the alliance would respond militarily if Moscow continued with what Nato leaders called 'unacceptable violations of Turkish air space.' Mr Putin should have realised that, this time, Nato was serious, especially as Turkey is deeply unhappy about Russia’s military intervention in support of Assad, Ankara’s long-standing enemy. But the Russian leader has got so used to Western leaders making dire threats and then doing nothing – as happened during the Crimea crisis – that, so far as Turkey was concerned, he could continue to push his luck. Well now, after the Turks have shot down a Russian SU-24 warplane close to the Syrian border, Mr Putin might finally understand the truth of that old adage: if you play with fire, eventually you end up getting burned."

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"Paris attacks show why Europe needs to clean out its weapons-smuggling black holes"

Colin Freeman weist darauf hin, dass die Terroristen von Paris ihre Sturmgewehre möglicherweise über Schwarzmärkte in Osteuropa erhalten hätten. Europa dürfe diese Quellen tödlicher Waffen nicht länger ignorieren. Scharfe Waffengesetze wie in Großbritannien sollten ebenfalls in Erwägung gezogen werden. "No, this doesn't mean that weapons won't be smuggled in via newer warring states like Ukraine and Libya, both of which are now are now believed to be trickling surplus weapons stock into Europe But if the EU wants to prevent further atrocities like Paris - and clamp down on other gun crime in the process - it should its leverage in its newer corners to ensure that there are are as few 'black holes' as possible where weapons of war can be bought. At the same time, it might also consider whether the continent has anything to learn from Britain's ultra-strict gun laws. Yes, they make life less fun for law abiding sportsmen. If, though, they also make it harder for Isil's fanatics to their shopping trips, it might be a price worth paying."

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"Who are the jihadists who may have brought down the Russian jet?"

Der Absturz des russischen Passagierflugzeugs in Ägypten ist möglicherweise durch eine Bombe herbeigeführt worden. Richard Spencer beschreibt den Aufstieg der mutmaßlich verantwortlichen radikalislamischen Extremisten des "Islamischen Staates" auf der Sinai-Halbinsel. "Bombing an airliner out of the sky would be a major step up in capabilities not only for Islamic State but particularly for the two men who have built the forces of jihad in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula into a major threat, according to analysts who monitor the groups. As recently as two years ago, the jihadists of Sinai were a semi-organised group of former criminal elements, radicalised local youth, and some volunteers sent from Al-Qaeda’s arm in Yemen, numbering no more than in the low hundreds."

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